Due to air conditioning issues in Qatar, Spain’s duo will miss the World Cup 2022 opener
After catching colds from their air conditioning units in Qatar, Spain’s Alvaro Morata and Dani Carvajal were only fit enough to start on the bench against Costa Rica.
On Wednesday night, Luis Enrique’s men opened their latest World Cup campaign against the Central American nation with the biggest victory in tournament history, eventually winning 7-0 at the Al Thumama Stadium.
Before the game even started, there were questions about Spain’s starting XI, with Morata and Carvajal both left out in favor of Ferran Torres and Cesar Azpilicueta, despite the pair appearing to be first choices going into the tournament.
However, it appears that Morata and Carvajal made their rooms slightly too cold, as talkSPORT reports that they were struck down with minor colds prior to their meeting with Costa Rica. Their absences, however, had little impact on Enrique’s plans.
The 2010 champions led 3-0 at the break thanks to goals from Dani Olmo, Marco Asensio, and Torres. After halftime, the former Manchester City man added another, while Gavi and Carlos Soler also scored.
Alvaro Morata and Dani Carvajal Start the world cup on the Bench
Morata was fit enough to come on as a substitute and had enough time to score with a well-placed finish in stoppage time. The 30-year-old now has 28 goals in 58 appearances for Spain.
Former Spanish international Aitor Karanka has heaped praise on the former Chelsea flop, implying that he has complete faith in manager Enrique. “I have known Alvaro since I coached him at the Under-17 World Cup in Nigeria,” he wrote in a column for The Sun.
“He’s still the same character he was back then.” His body language sometimes suggests that he is affected by criticism, which he received at last summer’s Euros from some supporters who felt he was too aggressive.
“But believe me, he doesn’t care.” As long as he has a manager who believes in him, he will not be discouraged if he misses a chance and will be confident that he will score the next one. And he is constantly striving to improve. He’s a fantastic professional and a fantastic striker.”
It remains to be seen whether Morata returns to the starting lineup when Spain plays Germany on Sunday.